Sandy Carter: Service Oriented Architecture (SOA) -- Off the Record
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Guys!! I have struggling to get my blog line up and going... I am now back on line, although I lost all my August blogs into neverland!
Watch out as we heat up for the 2H SOA Launch!!
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Well, I am so happy. I have a list of the top 100 things that I wanted to do in life...and one of those was to write a book. Of course, I really wanted it to be a murder mystery (maybe next time!) however, since I love SOA (as you all know!) I am thrilled.
The book just arrived .... and I wanted you guys to check it out and provide me your feedback.
Thank you so much for your notes and comments as we've gone as your comments have influenced my thoughts!
I will be doing my book signing at the IMPACT 2007 event-- A defining event for SOA ! Enroll me now
For more information ... go to ... Books by Sandy! [Read More]
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Well we just completed another SOA case competition with Duke University and UNC. Each year we do this as a business case competition between the top-ranked business schools. Here is was extra fun since the schools are already renown cross-town rivals on the sports field. Well, I guess we will see on the sports side this year!!
Fifteen teams of MBA students were given a case about SOA with just 14 hours to analyze the case and craft recommendations that they would present to a panel of IBM executives and subject matter experts. The MBA students work through th night to meet a 7:00 am deadline and are asked to apply what they have learned in the classroom to a real world situation.
Aside from getting 60 superstar business students to think about solutions, the case competition drives thought leadership with future business leaders. These MBA students will graduate and go back into the global corporate environment where many of them will eventually become leaders of industry. The case competition also is an opportunity for the students to showcase their abilities and for IBM executives to identify talent for their teams.
Read all about it!!! Click Here! a>
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I am in NC at Wrightsville Beach. I find nothing as relaxing as the ocean and my dream is that one day, I could live here for months on end. Today, as I was swimming with my 2 girls I could think of nothing better. The weather was perfect, the sky was super blue, and the crowds light! Wow!
So at night while sitting here listening to the waves crashing on the ocean, I decided to surf the site for great podcasts that I could learn from (yes I know, on vacation too -- I also bought a couple of great leadership books to read!!). I listened to the podcast by Tim Berners-Lee, the father of the WWW! Listed by Time magazine as one of the 100 greatest minds of this century, his inspiring work on the Web set the stage for a world of changes in the way people do business, entertain themselves, exchange ideas, and socialize. He talked about his early history with the Web, opportunities and challenges at present, emerging technologies, and his current project: the semantic Web.
Click here for the unique opportunity to hear from the man whose work truly changed the world.
Click here [Read More]
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We have talked about SOA and the value of the SOA entry point of information. This week we went public with more focus on customers seeing value from Information as Service. In addition, to people and process, Information seems to be a big focal for many customers!
To here about this and more ... come to IMPACT 2007 -- A defining event for SOA ! Enroll me now
SOA is a diamond store's best friend By Rich Seeley, News Writer28 Feb 2007 | SearchWebServices.com
Diamonds and SOA
Customers who spend thousands of dollars for a pair of diamond earrings probably would like the jewelry store staff to remember them the next time they visit. They probably don't want to have to tell a sales associate the entire history of what they bought in the past and explain personal tastes and prices ranges.
It's basically very easy for us with any application within the enterprise to access information not only in the data warehouse, but any database within our internal network. Greg Backhus, Director of Data Warehousing, Helzberg Diamonds That is the customer service challenge faced by Helzberg Diamonds, which has been in the jewelry game since 1915. Back then, of course, store managers kept customer histories in their heads or in one of those state of the art ledger books where they could scribble information with a fountain pen. Today, Helzberg relies on SOA and Web services to put a customer's history immediately into the hands of a sales associate at any of its 270 jewelry stores nationwide. The system is so effective that Helzberg is something of a poster child for IBM's Information on Demand initiative combining SOA and data integration technology.
Using point-of-sale lookup applications built with the SOA components of WebSphere, sales representative have real-time access to customer information stored in a data warehouse at Helzberg's corporate headquarters in Kansas City, MO, explains Greg Backhus, director data warehousing for the company. Even if a customer from Kansas City visits a store in St. Louis, all his history and account information will be there so the sales associate can provide the same level of customer service as the store back home.
However, up until the implementation of the SOA lookup application using Web services to connect point-of-sale terminals to the data warehouse, that was not the case. As any database administrator knows, filling a database with information is one thing, getting specific data back out in real time right when you need it and where you need it can be a challenge.
"We have a fairly mature data warehousing environment," Backhus said. "It's enterprise-wide and hits every subject area within the organization, but we have had challenges with all the different parts of the organization accessing that information."
Prior to the SOA implementation, sales associates only had access to customer information from local stores in their city or region, he explained. So in the case of a patron from St. Louis who moves to Kansas City, the local store could not easily get the customer's previous history with Helzberg. Getting the information would have required sending a request to the data warehouse administrators at the home office and then waiting to get the data back in a spreadsheet. Not exactly real-time.
"That probably wasn't happening a lot," Backhus concedes of the old query system. Since the store in his new hometown didn't have his records, the customer might find a new favorite jewelry store, which is the last result that Helzberg Diamonds would want. So the use of the SOA lookup application has been crucial to what Backhus says is the intangible of customer retention.
"Now, by using the central lookups, it goes back to a central database where all the customer information is kept across all the markets," he explained. "So there is a 360-degree view of the relationship of that customer to the company."
While he did not have ROI dollar figures for the SOA lookup application, he said it is achieving the intangible goal of enhancing customer satisfaction.
Besides the lookup applications, Helzberg has developed an SOA customer relationship management (CRM) application, which based on customer history in the central data warehouse, pings sales associates in local stores reminding them to send thank you notes to customers or reminders of servicing appointments.
"Now we use Web services to access backend data," Backhus explained. "It's basically very easy for us with any application within the enterprise to access information not only in the data warehouse, but any database within our internal network."
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Not sure if you saw this or its significance but we have continued our focus on developers!
IBM continued its drive to stimulate SOA adoption this week giving developers a free pass to use any IBM patent related to more than 150 Web services and SOA standards.
We are trying to support the need of developers and customers who will create the next generation of SOA applications.
Check it out! Visit SOA and Web Services patents
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Sorry I was lost in neverland for a while and lost all my August Blogs!! But I am back just in time for the 2H launch!
Did you miss this blog?
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This is a great article that I just got published in WebSphere Magazine. I think this Tailored approach -- for your company and your industry -- is the way to explore SOA!
What are your Thoughts?
Also P.S. Enroll me now
Read it here too
SOA Manufactures Success for the Supply Chain
There's no question that Service Oriented Architectures (SOA) will continue to lead the IT and business agenda. After all, an SOA offers a flexible, extensible, and composable approach to reusing and extending existing applications and services, as well as constructing new ones.To encourage business growth while still keeping costs in check, many organizations in all industries are relying on an SOA as a way to increase the flexibility and reuse of their exiting IT assets.Of course, with any new technology, there tends to be a lot of buzz - some factual, some not so well founded - surrounding the opportunities presented by an SOA. Analysts have predicted, pundits have professed, professors have lectured, and companies have scurried to sell what they had as SOA products - often missing the point that SOA isn't a product. It's about bridging the gap between business and IT through a set of business-aligned IT services using a set of design principles, patterns, and techniques.When you view your SOA as a strategic architecture, one that will enable you to align your technology more closely with the needs of the business, you'll gain greater business flexibility and cost savings. In fact, a recent study by Aberdeen found that the world's largest companies might save up to $53 billion in information technology spending over the next five years by implementing an SOA.While many may equate SOA deployments with the traditional early adopter markets such as financial services and insurance, there's a strong movement among manufacturers to tap into the power of Service Oriented Architectures.In fact, 21% of manufacturing companies have already begun to deploy or develop SOA software while another 46% said they plan to implement or evaluate SOA software over the next 24 months, according to a recent AMR Research survey.For those manufacturers evaluating, mapping, or implementing an SOA, it's important to be aware that the architectural style defining an SOA is that it describes a set of patterns and guidelines for creating loosely coupled, business aligned services that provide unprecedented flexibility in responsiveness to new business threats and opportunities. Coming to Terms with What Exactly an SOA IsAs you know, an SOA is an enterprise-scale IT architecture for linking resources on-demand. In an SOA, resources are made available to participants in a value net, enterprise, or line-of-business (typically spanning multiple applications in an enterprise or across multiple enterprises). While SOA discussions abound in every organization at nearly every level, the conversations usually center on the following questions, "How much?", "How long will it take?", "When can I start to see the results?", and most importantly, "Do I really need an SOA?"These are all valid questions. Remember, though, that the decision to implement an SOA shouldn't be taken lightly. It's similar to committing to a lifestyle change because the IT governance to which your development and operational teams adhere to will be quite different.Still, an SOA can prove to be the most effective way to align IT more closely with the needs of your business.And though the intricacies of each SOA deployment will be unique to each organization, there's a proven path to success that relies on four fundamental aspects: model, assemble, deploy, and manage. When manufacturers follow this path, their end results have proven to be far greater than if they hadn't leveraged the methodology. Top 10 Benefits of an SOA for a ManufacturerWhile SOA continues to dominate the spotlight of most organizations, it's important to note that of any industry, manufacturing is one of the ripest for SOA adoption and acceleration based on the following 10 factors. 1. Leverages existing investments in ERP 2. Streamlines the supply chain 3. Improves customer service 4. Aligns IT with your business goals 5. Offers greater visibility into products 6. Consolidated and consistent views of information through one consolidated view; manufacturers, partners, and customers alike can better manage inventory costs, reduce duplicate orders, and curb shipment delays. 7. Maximizes inventory 8. Eliminates additional IT work 9. Helps adhere to regulatory compliance 10. Cost savings Business has gotten increasingly complex over the last couple of decades. Factors such as mergers, regulations, global competition, outsourcing, and partnering have shifted the way that business is conducted. Yet companies can be hampered in their ability to keep pace due to outdated IT systems that don't maximize their investments, align with their business goals, or extend and build their community of business partners and customers. This is where an SOA can prove most valuable. SOAs can solve immediate business problems while simultaneously laying the groundwork for flexible IT that's capable of adapting quickly to changing business conditions. Backed by robust standards, technologies and best practices, SOA will let manufacturers reap tremendous results with a tangible ROI on their IT investments allowing them to leverage their existing IT assets, dramatically improve business process productivity and ROI, and rapidly create competitive advantage by making their business processes work harder for their company.[Read More]
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It's been eight months since the publication of my book on SOA, "The New Language of Business: SOA and Web 2.0." During that time it has become one of the best-selling IBM books. I've really enjoyed hearing from those of you who have read it. Thank you for all your comments - and please keep them coming!
One thing I do hear is where people can order the book. It's available online at the IBM Press Website or on Amazon - so check it out!
OR use this URL for the buyer to access the book quickly without searching for it.visit Quick Direct Hit
IBMers can order a copy of the Full book or Mini book directly and receive a 35% discount through the IBM Press Website using the coupon code: CARTER654X and ISBNs: 013195654X - The New Language of Business, during the checkout process (promotion available until end of October 2007). Bulk orders are available at a 65% discount rate. Order your copy today! IBM Press Booksvisit IBM Press Books
Also, please feel free to email Anindo Dey
Happy Reading! Sandy[Read More]
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Well, I haven't communicated in a while....getting a rest over the holidays and then of course, being slammed upon my return with 2007 planning.
I wanted to catch up with a few blogs on some hot news.
To focus on SOA, yes SOA again!, we are having a powerful event called IBM Impact 2007 – May 20 – 25, Orlando. We expect to have over 4000 attendees....and will have about 100 customer speakers. If you'd like to be one, let me know!
We will have 3 tracks ... one for Technical, one for Business and one for CXOs that is sort of a combo view.
Mark Burnett, creator of "The Apprentice" and "Survivor”; Carol Baroudi, co-author of SOA for Dummies; Steve Mills, SVP of IBM Software Group, and the GM of WebSphere and many more innovators will be there speaking!
And don't forget the fun ... there will be lots of networking opportunities (maybe I can even meet some of you guys in person!!!)
Registration is now open!
Enroll me now [Read More]
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I love pearls from Japan. After I landed in Narita, I immediately went to visit my friend Jane Yonamine for a look at the latest Pearl styles! She has such awesome merchandise and her husband was the first man of color to play for the San Francisco 49ers! Check out her store ... Click Here For Real Pearls . Although I always go and see Jane, her pearls are not the only pearls I check out here!
Tomorrow we will have Pearls of Wisdom about SOA at the Japan SOA summit. There are over 400 customers attending and there will be 12 customer speakers from top companies like Yanmar, Nissan, Hokkaido Cultural Broadcasting, Sumitomo Trust and Banking, NTT Communications, and Asahi Kasei Medical. At this conference, we will make 2 announcements -- stay tuned and I'll post the information tomorrow.
I am sitting here with Anu Ahuja and Sachiko Tsuchiya-San and they just shared with me that in Japan, IBM is very well recognized as the market leader in SOA. According to Gartner (Gartner's IT Demand Survey Report from May of 2006), IBM was chosen as the leader of all vendors as the company they want to work with around SOA engagements. This is a powerful recommmendation of IBM as the vendor of Choice for SOA. And Anu and Sachiko continued with the good news. IBM GBS was the leading consulting firm that companies count on for their SOA adoption!
Well, more from Japan tomorrow - and then its off to China!
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I just got back from a multiple country visits and conferences!
SOA around the world is amazing!! I was just in front of audiences in Madrid, Paris, Athens, Venice, Mumbai, Beijing, Tokoyo and more.
I will try to summarize my insights from each!!!
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Hey! I just arrived back from St Thomas and had a wonderful time! I took my daughter to Cokki Beach and Trunk Bay for some awesome snorkeling!!! It was her first time and the excitement in seeing those fish was amazing! She of course laughed and leaked in a lot of water. Too funny but the energy and amazement made me realize there is more to life than SOA!!
Thanks for the great response on the SOA for dummies book! Keep the emails and requests coming in!
More exciting news on SOA later this week!
Here's to vacations, sand, and turquoise waters!
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The Full Article
You could say that behind every successful service-oriented architecture is a CEO. With its promise of using existing technology to more closely align information technology with business goals, SOAs have proven to help companies realize greater efficiencies, cost savings and productivity. Still, as many IT managers have learned, without executive endorsement, an SOA will be relegated to the confines of IT as opposed to being recognized as an organization-wide business strategy. While no two organizations are exactly alike, there are consistent themes that arise -- and pitfalls to avoid -- when aiming for approval to build an SOA. For those many IT leaders who are facing the seemingly daunting challenge of presenting the importance and value of an SOA strategy to the executive suite, following are ten tips for selling SOA to the CEO. 1. Don't call it SOA: explain the value and benefits in business terms that reflect the organization's goals -- such as cost reduction, productivity, competitive advantage, etc. -- before diving into a technical conversation.2. Vision, not version: outline the immediate and long-term results from this strategy while avoiding discussions about specific version numbers.3. Build consensus throughout the company: prove the value of SOA through small test projects conducted with volunteer departments in the organization. Make sure to include those department leaders when you later roll out the SOA. 4. Start small yet live large: when selecting those small test projects, choose to integrate and automate those business processes that can have the most widespread, positive impact across the organization. 5. Ixnay on the TLA: while it's easy to get caught up in the technical jargon that is fully understood among peers, remember that three letter acronyms (TLA) can sound as eloquent as pig Latin when trying to convince your CEO of a major new strategic undertaking. 6. Get to the powerful points: without relying on complex slides that can deter from the true purpose of the meeting. 7. Conviction and prediction: articulate goals for each step along the SOA path. By publicly stating and achieving realistic goals for the organization based on an SOA -- increasing productivity or decreasing costs by XX percent -- you can bolster confidence in the project and overall strategy.8. Reference third party validation: cite analyst data on the growth and adoption of service oriented architectures and point to relevant SOA success stories within your industry (and by your competitors). 9. The close: SOA what? Outline specific before-and-after scenarios of the impact of SOA on your particular organization to help disarm any naysayer and gain CEO approval.10. Qualify and quantify: set goals, track performance and refine methodologies at every step along the way. Be sure to share the results with interested parties on a regular basis to demonstrate the success of your company's SOA journey.The opportunity to evangelize SOA to company executives is rare. To make the most of your extended elevator pitch, remember to articulate business benefits, reiterate bottom line results and illustrate the company-wide value of an SOA.